This sign was adopted by Gavin Wade, Director of Eastside Projects to be displayed outside their building on Heath Mill Lane for the whole of 2013. At the end of the year it continued its journey, returning to London to take up residence at Beaconsfield for the whole of 2014.
Eastside Projects is located in Digbeth, the oldest area of Birmingham. Digbeth remains very industrial, with many workshops and businesses producing everything from metal scoops for coffee and fish, large scale steel fabrication, foam and upholstery and electrical transformers to mudguards for vintage motorbikes.
Eastside Projects is situated on a busy road and our neighbours are a taxi repair garage and a limo hire company.
The sign was hardwearing and easy to look after. It was very heavy and bulky so carrying it outside and taking it in at the end of the day became quite a chore for gallery staff by the end of the year. It was also chained and padlocked to a drain cover (this being the nearest and easiest object to lock the sign to) and no one particularly enjoyed having to stick their hand down a drain twice a day.
Audience / Feedback
Heath Mill Lane (the road Eastside Projects is located on) appears to be especially windy! Despite the screw designed to reduce spin in high winds there were days when we were unable to put the sign out due to adverse weather conditions.
The sign was very useful in preventing cars parking in front of the gallery entrance - an ongoing problem we have due to the taxi garage next door. It gave physicality and definition to 'our' section of the pavement, reminding those businesses around us that we have a right to use the space as well.
The sign joined a number of other external works that we have, including a wall mounted sign by James Langdon, a marbled piece for a bricked in window by Scott Myles, and our billboard, which hosts a new design by a different artist for every exhibition.
The sign also joined our collection of 'long term works' - artworks that exist/remain in the gallery for longer than one temporary exhibition.
Many visitors mention that is it hard to find the gallery. There were several comments that the sign helped make the gallery visible from further away, especially if you were walking down the street, as if coming from the centre of town, or the train station. It was also a useful device for us to use to signpost the gallery for delivery drivers, who often call us after getting lost!
The irony of a sign saying 'climate change' situated between two motor vehicle businesses appeared to be lost on our neighbours, and it was amusing to watch them parking as close to it as the possibly could, sometimes even moving it if the gap was just a bit too small for them. It has been pointed out that you could read the sign as 'change climate'.